What sets GovGrant apart in the market place is the expertise of its consultants and the time and effort the company spends getting to know its clients. The Research and Development Tax Credit specialists work with hundreds of businesses and each and every one is completely different.
A core part of the GovGrant team is the network of analysts – the experts who spend time with clients getting to understand exactly what it is they do and how they have used innovation to advance their business and improve the way they go about things.
Bilal Patel provides central support to the analysts and loves to get out and about to visit clients whenever he gets the chance. A chemical engineer by training and background, the 35-year-old resisted the urge to go into management because he loves the idea of working with businesses of all shapes and sizes.
The job of the analyst is to get to know as much about the client as possible and to understand what processes they use, how they evolved and how they implement them. By doing this analysts can pinpoint where research and development has been used to improve processes. Most clients GovGrant works with are surprised when they realise just how much of their day to day work qualifies as R&D.
Bilal worked as an engineer in the food and pharmaceutical industry before taking up a role as a consultant where he advised firms how to improve their processes and systems. But his career has taking something of a different course after coming to work with GovGrant.
“I decided that I had gone as far as I could in what I was doing and the obvious next step for me to make a change and utilise my skills for a different purpose.” Bilal explained “I just decided I wanted a new challenge and I wanted to do something completely different. I was aware of the R&D tax credit relief scheme and it was something that I thought I would like to get involved with.” He added: “I really enjoy helping businesses and for many of them the scheme is vital, it can be a very important source of income.”
Analysts spend several days with a client speaking to the key individuals in the business. The first stage of the process is to hold a series of interviews with the people most likely to be involved in research and development. It is Bilal’s job to get to grips with the nature of the business and to try to understand where research and development has been used to improve processes and get better results.
Typically the average successful claim for R&D tax relief credit from a small and medium sized enterprise (SME) is £61,000. According to some estimates around 90% of SMEs have never put together a claim under the R&D Tax Credit scheme.
Thanks to his experience and expertise Bilal is comfortable dealing with businesses from a wide range of sectors. He has worked across a number of areas including agriculture, financial services, clothing, construction and food and drink. He said: “It is fantastic working with so many companies who are constantly looking to improve what they do. Getting them to understand what constitutes research and development and the benefit available is so rewarding.”
“Going out and talking to clients is the best part of the job and I get a real sense of satisfaction. We sit down and have conversations with people. It is all about listening to clients and getting the necessary information from them. Often business do not realise that they have used research and development to change and improve their processes.”
He added: “One of the best things about what I do, is it has given me a much broader appreciation of how creative and innovative business people can be. I find it inspirational talking to business people, they are generally ambitious and creative people. And the best ones know how to get the very best out of the people who work for them.”
“The reason I came to work for GovGrant is because I wanted to broaden my experience and knowledge and help people improve their business.I find what I do very satisfying and that is important for me as an individual. What I am doing at the moment is one of the most rewarding and interesting jobs I have ever had.”